Essay about Love Canal

Essay about Love Canal

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Love Canal is a controversial environmental tragedy. Although, Love Canal is not as big as the recent Freedom Industry spill in West Virginia or China’s toxic air pollution, the Love Canal even continues to be debated because more and more information about its causes and harms is revealed each decade since 1953. The case of Love Canal is interesting, because toxic dumping wasn’t illegal at that time, yet created a conflict between the public and the law, and examines the justice in the society.
According to National Academy of Engineering (2006), back in the 1940s, it was legal to dump whatever wastes in private own lands (p.1); therefore a significant amount of jeopardizing wastes were created and dumped into landfills in the United States. Many of those landfills were tested and they turned out to be frail and unsafe (Jaffe & Hites, 1984). Love Canal is one of the spots. In 1942, the company, Hooker’s, began dumping nearly 22,000 tons of chemical wastes into Love Canal. Later on, Hooker’s bought the land and made it as their private property. Ten years later, in 1953, the Hooker’s filled the canal and sold the land to the Niagara Falls Board of Education with an unbelievable price, one dollar. The Hooker’s sold the land without notifying how serious was the existence of toxic chemical wastes underground. They did not detect the level of danger and if it is suitable for human beings to live above or around the canal. At that point, the Hooker’s action, dumped chemical wastes on its land, did not break the law; however, sold the land without warning, was certainly injustice. Later on, more and more residents discovered chemical infiltrated their basements and reported to the local government. Furthermore, chemicals started risin...


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National Academy of Engineering (2006, April 7). Timeline of Events at Love Canal” Online Ethic Center for Engineering. National Academy of Engineering. Retrieved March 28, 2014 from: http://www.onlineethics.org/cms/6532.aspx
Ozonoff, D. & Boden, L. I. (1987) Truth and Consequences: Health Agency Responses to Environmental Health Problems. Science, Technology &Human Values, (12), 70-77. Retrieved March 2, 2014 from: http://www.jstor.org/stable/689385
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (2012, August 14). Region 2 Superfund. EPA. Retrieved March 28, 2014 from: http://www.epa.gov/region02/superfund/npl/lovecanal/
The State University of New York at Buffalo (1980, May 23). Love Canal Chronologies. The State University of New York at Buffalo. Retrieved March 28, 2014 from: http://library.buffalo.edu/specialcollections/lovecanal/about/chronology.php

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